The IHS Market Eurozone Manufacturing PMI® read 47.0 for August, marginally better than July’s 46.5 but still well into the contraction zone.
Greece (54.9), Netherlands (51.6) and France (51.1) alone posted growth readings. Germany continues to foot the table with an improved but still very low 43.5. Ireland fell to a more than six year low reading of 48.6.
The downturn remains centred on intermediate and investment goods manufacturing, with both sectors contracting in August. Consumer goods manufacturing expanded at a solid rate and extended its current period of growth to nearly six years.
Overall order books continued to decline, with only France, Netherlands and Greece recording any improvement. Export orders continued to contract although there was some improvement over July. Manufacturing backlogs were eroded during August, indicating the levels of excess capacity now prevailing. Overall employment levels have now fallen for four months running, but the decline is particularly marked in Germany. Factory gate prices are falling as companies discount to try to win business.
Markit says the factors depressing manufacturing remain the same with automotive weakness, trade wars and tariffs topping the list.